AUSTIN (KXAN) - Austin Energy hasn't raised its rates in 18 years, but that will soon change.
The Austin City Council will vote in June to determine how much more customers will pay.
With price hikes expected, more homeowners are turning to Mother Nature to power their homes.
In the Mueller neighborhood, dozens of homeowners have installed solar panels -- many saying it's the best investment they could have made.
Martine Racine, who has lived in his green home for more then a year, said having the sun work for you is great.
"In the summer, like August, it paid for about 80 percent of our energy cost," said Racine. "During the winter, it's pretty much 100 percent."
For Racine, the decision to make the switch to solar panels was a no-brainer, even with the upfront cost.
"It costs about $26,000 to install the panels on the house, after the rebates, about $3,500," said Racine.
Texas weather can change in minutes, and that was a concern for Racine.
With the panels mounted on the roof, they're exposed and vulnerable to the outside elements. But after checking with his homeowners insurance, Racine said the solar panels were covered for any damage that might occur.
If solar panels is out the budget right now, you can also save by keeping your thermostat at 78 degrees when you're home. Keep it between 82- and 85 degrees when you're gone.
Austin Energy said they have enough rebates to go around, so if you're interested in installing solar panels, check their website.
Emergency agencies from all over Hays County will be out in full force Friday at Dripping Springs Middle School as they take a new training approach to protect the lives of children.
Ten-year-old Cameron Ferweda is a fan of action-adventure books. Of writing them, that is.
The state's chief financial officer says a booming Texas economy has created an extra $2.5 billion in unspent revenue.
An armed robbery in South Austin set off a search for two men with guns early Friday morning.
Two school buses and a car crashed on eastbound Parmer Lane near Ranch Road 620 on Friday morning but there were no reports of injuries.
Ikea has officially declared a war against loneliness during the holiday season.